PECASE Winner Colleen Mouw in D.C. This Week

Colleen Mouw (GMES) double-checked to make sure the email wasn't spam. Who gets a personalized message from the White House anyway? The correspondence was indeed real—and an early step to Mouw winning one of the prestigious Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) this spring.

Mouw has helped bring oceanography to the Great Lakes, for which NASA nominated her for the PECASE Award. She will be in Washington, D.C. this week for the reception.

Specializing in remote sensing, Mouw, is an assistant professor of oceanography and a scientist in the Great Lakes Research Center. Mouw's work focuses on the big picture of some of the world's smallest life forms.

"I've done quite a bit of work determining phytoplankton functional types from space," she says, explaining different photosynthesizing free-floating plants that make up the bottom of the food chain produce nearly half of the world's oxygen and affect global carbon and nutrient cycles.

Paula Bontempi is the NASA program manager who nominated Mouw for PECASE. She says Mouw's contributions to oceanography—from research on ocean plants in the Bering Sea to public health issues in Wisconsin lakes—reflect her ability to link water, land and atmosphere in a complex, changing climate.

By connecting the world's smallest and largest scales, Mouw hopes to help grow understanding of how aquatic ecosystems are responding to environmental change and what this means for water resources that people rely on in the Great Lakes and around the globe.

You can read more about her research. 

Lean Facilitator Graduates 2016

On April 7, Michigan Tech's new Lean facilitators were recognized. These new facilitators completed a six-month training program with classroom learning and work-related projects.

They received in-depth training on team building, conflict management, organizational change, facilitating techniques and Lean methods and tools. They are now ready to join the current Lean facilitators and will spread continuous improvement using Lean thinking across the University.

The names of the graduates are below:

  • Peter Baril- Administration
  • Daniel Bennett- Public Safety and Police Services
  • Jessica Comfort- Enrollment Services
  • Jaclyn Dessellier- UP Health Systems Rehab and Sports Medicine
  • Annelise Doll- Van Pelt and Opie Library
  • Heather Dunne- Housing and Residential Life
  • Lisa Hitch- Electrical and Computer Engineering Department
  • Linnea McGowan Hobmeier- Van Pelt and Opie Library
  • Georgeann Larson- Van Pelt and Opie Library
  • Joel Liimatainen- Human Resources
  • Daryl Matthews- Auxiliary Services
  • Renee Ozanich- Human Resources
  • Brenda Randell- Administration
  • Mark Randell- UP Health Systems Rehab and Sports Medicine
  • Laurie Stark- Van Pelt and Opie Library
  • Lorraine Young- Human Resources

For more information about the Lean facilitator training, contact

Keweenaw Geoheritage Field/Boat Trips: July 2016

This is the third year of one day geotours of Michigan's Keweenaw based on four of the five Geoelements of Keweenaw Geoheritage. These tours use ground and boat transportation and visit some of the most scenic and important geological spots in the Keweenaw.

We use the University's research vessel Agassiz. Individual trips include "Lavas and the Keweenaw Rift," "The Keweenaw Fault," "Jacobsville Sandstone" and "Mining Wastes of Lake Superior." The trips are led by Bill Rose and Erika Vye, from Michigan Tech's Geological Engineering department. 

Details of these trips are described online. They feature places that can best be seen by boat. There are only 17 spaces on each trip — sign up early. 

HuskiesFit Dollar Days

Want to change up your workout, try out a new class or set some new fitness goals?

Several HuskiesFit Programs will offer classes for only $2 during Dollar Days May 9 to May 13. Cycle, kick, lift and stretch your way to a healthier you.

Visit HuskiesFit Programs to view the Dollar Days schedule and a full listing of adult group fitness classes offered this summer. Commit to be HuskiesFit.

Football Captains Announced for 2016 Season

Michigan Tech Head Football Coach Tom Kearly announced that Brandon Cowie (West Bend, Wis.), Evan Mayer (Wausau, Wis.), Ben Tauchen (Bonduel, Wis.) and David Walter (Midland, Mich.) will serve as team captains for the 2016 season.

Cowie, who also served as a captain last fall, was an All-GLIAC Honorable Mention pick during his first season as quarterback of the Huskies.

Mayer was an All-GLIAC Second Team selection as a junior after finishing among the GLIAC leaders in tackles for loss with 14. The 6-foot-6 defensive lineman also served as a captain for the 2016 Tech football spring game.

Tauchen was second on the Huskies last fall in tackles with 76 en route to All-GLIAC Honorable Mention recognition.

Walter had a breakout junior campaign and earned an All-GLIAC Honorable Mention citation for his efforts. 

The group, which is comprised entirely of seniors, has combined to earn six All-GLIAC Team honors and 10 GLIAC academic awards during their time in Houghton.

To read the full story and find out more about Michigan Tech Sports visit


Kerri Sleeman, executive director, Facilities Management, was one of 35 invited participants to the 2016 Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA) annual "Thought Leaders Symposium" from April 25 to April 28. APPA created the annual Thought Leaders Symposium (TLS) in 2006 to engage in an annual discussion and distillation of the major issues impacting colleges and universities and to better inform both senior institutional officers and educational facilities professionals on alternative ways to deal with these problems.

This year's symposium focused on one major issue: remaking the Facilities Organization and its impact on the future of higher education amidst an environment of diminishing resources. Sleeman was able to participate remotely via web conferencing due to travel limitations. A summary brief will be published in the fall 2016 based on the multi-day discussion.

Job Posting

Job Posting for Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Staff and faculty job descriptions are available in Human Resources. For more information regarding staff positions, call 7-2280 or email  

For more information regarding faculty positions, contact the academic department in which the position is posted. 

Digital Services Specialist I, University Marketing & Communications. Apply online.


Business Systems Analyst​, Auxiliary Services Operations. Apply online.

Michigan Technological University is an Equal Opportunity Educational Institution/Equal Opportunity Employer, which includes providing equal opportunity for protected veterans and individuals with disabilities.

New Funding

Wayne Weaver (ECE) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $119,997 research grant from the U.S. Department of Defense, Office of Naval Research. Rush Robinett (ME-EM) and Nina Mahmoudian (ME-EM) are Co-PI's on the project entitled "Autonomous Microgrids: Theory, Control, Flexibility and Scalability."
This is the first year of a potential four-year project that could total $869,980.


Power Outages Begin Tonight

Michigan Tech Facilities is performing preventive maintenance on the campus high voltage lines tonight, tomorrow and Friday  nights (May 4-6).

During these times several buildings will be without power, network and phone service. Michigan Tech IT and Facilities recommend that occupants exit buildings prior to the outage and turn off all electronic devices that are plugged into outlets.

To find out details and the complete schedule of outage times and buildings affected, read the original Tech Today story.